Why creating your own traditions can be the best thing ever do for your mental health.

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year….”

you either:

1. Just started singing that song and can’t get it out of your head.
or
2. You just cringed.

If holidays are totally you’re thing, awesomesauce.
But if you’re the holiday Grinch or get the holiday blues, keep reading.

During the holidays seasons, depression and anxiety is at a peak.
Suppressed emotions about our family comes up, we go through a sense of grief for those no longer here with us to celebrate,  and anxiety about big social gatherings with your uncle ted who you just never really understood.

I’m going to share a short story on how changing my yearly traditions gave me power to create new happy traditions, ones that I hope last for generations.

I grew up in a wild style-split kind of family. I never knew if that holiday would go by with a breeze or wonder who was going to throw the first punch.

When I became a mom, that changed.

I no longer had to make decisions for myself, every decision results in how their life becomes.

Never will they spend a holiday in wonder of fear.

I was 17 the last time I spent a holiday with them.

I married my teenage love, who came with a big loving Italian family.

Their get togethers are always filled with to-die-for Italian cooking, games, and movies.

It gave me that sense of, “this is what holidays are suppose to feel like.”

After my divorce, I was faced with the decision on how to celebrate holidays.

I first wanted to hide under the covers all day and allow the holiday to just pass by.

But, you don’t choose to do that when you’re a mother.

Because what I choose, directly affects them.

That’s where our Holiday Breakfasts comes in.

Out of every meal of the day, breakfast style is perfectly acceptable at all times of the day.

It’s our all time favorite.

I wake up super early in the morning to begin chopping and baking.

With 2 cups of coffee down before my children even begin to open their eyes to the smell of (vegan) cinnamon apple French toast, biscuits, fresh fruit, sweet breads, grits, homestyle potatoes……..there’s so much food.

We don’t dress up and are typically always in our pjs still at noon.

The kids snack on mini muffins and breads until our feast is ready.

One-by-one people begin to arrive.

We never really know who is going to show up that year to our breakfast, we kind of just have this thing we say,

“If you want some good breakfast or need somewhere to go and be around feel good stuff, our door is open”

What first started with just my children and brother now holds the door open to new people every year.

Every year it’s wonderful.

& every year I realize how long it’s been since there was a drama free holiday in my life.

It’s been about 11 years now.

Because the people in my life, the new people who walk through my door for meals are there for community, good food, and to celebrate life that brought us all together.

 

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You create the life you desire within your daily habits,
how you spend your holidays works the same.

You get to a point where you recognize that you have choices.

Choose to mope and moan as the holidays come and go

or

Choose to create a day that feels good for you.

Skip going to 6 different houses in 2 days.

Skip saying you’ll make something to bring for each 6 house.

Say “no thank you, I’m taking some down time this year” if  you’d rather stay home and make tacos or take a hike.

 

Know that it’s okay to say no and okay go and decide to leave when you’re ready.
You don’t need to feel bad for ever leaving.
Never feel bad for leaving somewhere you don’t really want to be,
& don’t feel bad for saying no to something you don’t want to do.

YOU have the power to choose.

Holidays don’t really suck, it’s how you choose to see it and use it

So, this year take the opportunity to do something for the holidays that you want to do, and maybe something that generations to come will love too.

Your HappyHelper,
Chelsie Brooke

 

111 Journal Prompts

 

I always have my journal with me.

It’s my keeper of thoughts, secrets, dreams, memories, and all of those random ideas that pop into my head throughout the day.

For years I wrote in regular spiral notebooks until I bought my first tiffany blue hard cover journal with an attached gray fabric page marker that made me realize how much I truly love and gain from getting out the thoughts that swirl through my mind.

Writing helps me process where I’ve been, analyze where I am now, and strategize how I’m going to get to where I want to be.  

There are no right or wrong ways to journal.

Simply pick up your pen and begin writing whatever is on your mind.

 I’ve listed 111 prompts that have helped me open the doors within to become a new,
& I hope you find some that resonate with you!

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111 Journal Prompts: 

  • If money and time didn’t matter, how would you live your life?
  • List 20 things you’ve accomplished.
  • “Happiness is…”
  • List of gratitude.
  • How can  you take better care of yourself?
  • Write at the top of the page “IT IS TOTALLY POSSIBLE TO” and list 50 things. if that scares you, great. list 100. (this is an amazing thought awakening prompt by Dr. Jermery Goldburg from his “Shake My Shit up Challenge”)
  • Write a letter to someone who has wronged you. You don’t have to give it to them, but if you’re holding on, you should get it out.
  • How would you describe yourself to a stranger?
  • Write your obituary.
  • What do you need more of in life?
  • List 22 words that describe you.
  • List 11 things that you love about yourself.
  • Describe your ideal day. What does your magic morning look like? How is your time spent? Write as many details as possible to see your ideal day. 
  • What’s changed in the last 10 years?
  • How has your way of thinking changed in the last 5 years?
  • Imagine 10 years in the future, what’s your life like? describe in detail.
  • Write a litter to your 16 year old self.
  • If you KNEW you could not fail, what would you do?
  • What’s something your parents do that you do differently?
  • What makes you, YOU? There is no one else like you on earth. You are gift that was created with magic. Write about that. 
  • What message would you share with the world?
  • What words do you need to hear right now?
  • What legacy do you want to leave behind?
  • Write out your dream job.
  • What is your greatest weakness?
  • What would you do with a million dollars?
  • What would you do with 100 acres of land?
  • How do you feel knowing you are going to die?
  • What’s something you’ve always wondered?
  • Define success.
  • How can you organize your life more?
  • List people you enjoy being around and why.
  • List people and situations that made you feel uneasy and “not where you should be” in the last year. How did these situations make you feel and what have you done to prevent them from happening in the future?
  • Describe a moment today that you want to remember always.
  • What do you need to let go of?
  • What do you want to learn more about?
  • What are 3 small things you can do to every day to help you get to where you want to be?
  • What’s draining your energy? What can you do to replace it with something that recharges you?
  • How do you recharge?
  • Write down your favorite quote and what it means for you.
  • List 3 things you’re into that’s considered “different” and why you enjoy them.
  • What do you feel strongly about?
  • What are you proud of?
  • List 33 things that make you happy.
  • What do you see when you look in the mirror?
  • How do you feel when you are still?
  • List your “end of life” goals. What can you do now to take a step towards that?
  • What was a turning point in life? What changed?
  • What are your strengths?
  • What is fear?
  • What are you afraid of?
  • How are you right now?
  • When was the last time you had a really good hug?
  • What’s important in life?
  • Write in detail one of your favorite childhood memories.
  • Who do you admire and why?
  • What do you admire about yourself?
  • What are topics you could talk forever about?
  • What’s your current morning routine? Is there anything you want to do differently?
  • Write a letter to your elderly self.
  • What do you know to be true today that you didn’t know a year ago?
  • List ways you can simplify your life and how doing so would feel.
  • What did your parents teach you? the good and the bad.
  • How can you show more kindness to the world?
  • What do you love about life?
  • What triggers you?
  • What’s your biggest day to day challenges?
  • What’s your purpose in life?
  • Do you think we way we dress affects the way we feel?
  • What are your “higher” beliefs?
  • How can you show more love to others?
  • How can you show more love to yourself?
  • What is the universe trying to tell you?
  • What’s your best advice?
  • What qualities to you admire?
  • List 3 things that are possible to accomplish in the next year.
  • Write your why.
  • What do you love about your life right now?
  • What’s something you’ve wanted to do but hold back from doing?
  • What does spirituality mean to you?
  • What are ways we can make the world a better place?
  • What are some of your biggest unanswered questions in life?
  • Write your money story growing up. Think of your earliest money momory and how you were raised to think about it.
  • Describe the way you now feel about money.
  • What makes you feel empowered?
  • Are you comfortable with your sensuality? (86)
  • How did your darkest moments shape you?
  • What are your values?
  • If you had the opportunity to sit down with the president for 1 hour, what would you say?
  • Write your fantasy.
  • What made you better today than yesterday?
  • What has a fictional character said that has stuck with you?
  • What are some good reasons to live?
  • What’s a problem that would be solved if you were given $5,000?
  • If a stranger became you for 24 hours, what’s the first thing they would say when the 24 hours is up?
  • If you could choose any superpower, what would it be and how would you use it?
  • Why are people attracted to you? Don’t be humble.
  • What’s something you really don’t like but wished you did?
  • What brings out the worst in you?
  • Who is one of your closest friends and what makes them special to you?
  • What was the last negative thought you said to yourself? How can you shift that to show yourself kindness?
  • Who have you caused pain to that you haven’t forgiven yourself for yet? How can you shift that story to see what you learned and how you can grow?
  • When was the last time you really had time to yourself and what did you do? (103)
  • Think about one of the most painful memories you have, how did you survive it?
  • If life was guaranteed to work completely in your favor, how your life look? How does it feel?
  • If you have children, write them a letter to read when they get older.
  •  What are 3 things you do well?
  • What have you learned recently?
  • What are you doing in your life right now that your future self will thank you for?
  • What do you love doing so much that you loose track of time?
  • What are you doing to live happy and be healthy?

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